Maryland-based design firm Streetsense launches new VC group Streetsense Capital

Streetsense, a Bethesda, Maryland-based design firm that specializes in retail, restaurant, hospitality and real estate solutions, has launched a new venture capital group, Streetsense Capital. According to the company, its new VC affiliate will focus on opportunities within the sectors Streetsense currently serves.


Bethesda, MD (PRWEB) November 04, 2013
Streetsense, a multidisciplinary design and strategy firm specializing in retail, restaurant, hospitality, and real estate solutions, today announced the creation of a venture capital affiliate, Streetsense Capital. The new group will focus on growth opportunities within the industries Streetsense currently serves.
Streetsense is known for advising and assisting clients in developing, launching, and re-imagining brands as well as its experience in activating markets for small and large retailers and restaurateurs – including Petco, Chipotle, Starbucks, and Le Pain Quotidien. Streetsense launched its Eat+Drink consulting division last month to enhance its offerings with an end-to-end concept development and expansion solution for restaurants, retailers, and hotels.
Brian Taff, who currently serves as Streetsense’s Chief Operations and Strategy Officer will serve as a Streetsense Capital Managing Partner along with Howard Kra and Sebastian Fainbraun, who joined Streetsense Capital in October when Streetsense acquired Financial Foods.
“Streetsense Capital does not just provide money for great concepts looking to expand, it provides access to the collective intelligence of Streetsense’s nearly 80 designers, architects, advisors, and leasing strategists. Streetsense Capital seeks to be a true partner bringing significant intellectual capital and operating experience to the concepts in which we invest,” noted Brian Taff.
Marc Ratner, Streetsense’s Founder and CEO commented, “With the addition of Streetsense Capital, the Streetsense team’s ability to provide operational insight, enhance brand positioning, value-engineer spaces, and implement sound real estate expansion strategies provides an excellent resource and competitive advantage for Streetsense Capital’s investors and the concept founders. Taking a concept from two to 20 units requires discipline, know-how, and a patient capital source – these are the hallmarks of Streetsense Capital.”
Howard Kra joins Streetsense Capital as a Managing Partner. Previously, Howard was a co-founder of Financial Foods where he handled deal origination, investment due diligence, and negotiations of transactions. In addition to his work at Financial Foods, Howard has been a partner and private investor at Atlantic Capital Group since 2002, where amongst several deals, he was instrumental in the early stages of development of Honest Tea (Now a part of The Coca Cola Company) both as an advisor and early investor. Howard was also instrumental in the launching of, a pioneer in e-commerce that was started in 1993; he helped take the company public in June of 1999. The company has since then been acquired by Peapod.
Sebastian Fainbraun, CFA, joins Streetsense Capital as a Managing Partner. Prior to joining Streetesense Capital, Sebastian co-founded Financial Foods where his responsibilities included asset management, investment deal due diligence, transaction negotiations, as well as operational and real estate support. Over the past decade, Sebastian has been actively involved in the development, ownership, and management of a wide variety of real estate assets including commercial retail and pad sites with several national retail tenants. He has also helped found and grow several local companies. Sebastian started his career on Wall Street as a trader, quantitative analyst, and investment banker. Sebastian received his MBA in Finance from NYU’s Stern School, and is a CFA Institute Charter Holder.
About Streetsense:
Streetsense is a multidisciplinary design and strategy firm specializing in retail, restaurant, hospitality, and real estate solutions. Known and awarded for their collaborative ideology, Streetsense focuses on enhancing the way people live, work, shop, and interact. For more information, please visit
About Streetsense Capital:
Streetsense Capital is the venture affiliate of Streetsense. Founded to help small businesses within the retail, restaurant, hospitality, and real estate industries successfully grow and expand their ideas and concepts, Streetsense Capital provides intellectual and financial capital, strategic consulting, and asset management, as well as access to the unparalleled expertise of Streetsense’s multidisciplinary design and strategy team. For more information, please visit